Bologna, 29.5.2013

Stefano is a shoemaker and a biker, and now a new friend of mine. In one of the meetings with him he told me that shoes dont lie. He is reading how the people use their shoes and what it says about them. As one part in the present for him I decided to collect all shoes and ask him that he reads the personality of the person who wears them. No kidding, it works! Scroll down for the photos and more.

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2013-05-27 19.25.50



One evening while barbecueing good organic italian beef on the terasse of "Raum", I meet another friend of Silvia and Daniele, the curators of "Apiece for You Bologna". The friend is a german psychoanalist and doctor. I try to explain all my interests in the project to her. The reciprocity, creative relations, what I know about system theory, communications, etc.. I ask her about the position a psychoanalist takes in relation with a patient. 

 At this time it was still cold and rainy in Bologna, too cold for the end of May. Her suede shoes are wet, her feet cold. I offer her woolen socks and my big motorcycle boots which she appreciates. Her fine shoes get newspaper inside to soak the humidity a bit, and they get a place at the still warm barbecue.

 The position, yes, appearently she tries to be in principle distant to the patient. But it is unavoidable that even in these very differnt functions there is an immediate reciprocity happening in between the two. Sometimes patients give her presents, which seems to be difficult for her because there is always a reason behind the present, which she thematises then in her analysis.

The encounter is very interesting in the project, though she is not long enough in Bologna to make a present for her. It didnt even get to the point of asking her.

 Her shoes were not completly dry jet when she left, but her feet were warm. I offered her my socks as a present, since I have too many with me anyway, but she doesnt want. Instead she returns them the day after where we continue the talk a bit. During that, the question of what is behind a present gets dicussed again, and I ask myself the question again why I am doing this project. Well, there are reasons for everything, not sure if it is possible to understand them completly, specially in art, probably in live in general. As long there is a creative effect not only for oneself, it doesnt need more justification.

The work and the show with Stefano, the shoemaker, was rewarding. Stefano happy, Silvia and Daniele happy, the audience happy, me happy. Watch the video!

The psychoanalyst in my boots and socks and her shoes on the barbeque:

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Photos:Luca Ghedini, Silvia Fanti, Thomas Lehmen


At "Raum"

Impressive are the books. Piles of them in each corner. Along the wall: boxes, full with books. Even when I looked for a spoon in the cupboard underneeth the collection of teas: only books.

Daniele told me, that he read all of them, in principle. We might be same age, but hard to tell with him. Clear stinging eyes which might be able to kill you when the view is going deep enough, in a slim body of dark skin an long black hair. In him seems to be endless academic knowledge and life experience. Someone who doesnt need to talk much when it is not needed. Once a while he moves lightly in exitement, dance-like, and in these moments his physical agility matches his vivid mind. He is one half of the team who host me at their art place "Raum" in Bologna, privatly organized. I can hang out at this place, do my work, which is the preparation of a piece I want to do for a schoemaker in a couple of days.

The other half is not less challenging for me, Silvia. Her argumentation and critique is sharp like her partners eyes and go immediatly to the point, which is not only feared by me. Most of the times she is right. Sometimes I dont think so, because I understnd the project from a different perspective. While the core of the encounter of performer and presentee is in my mind not necessarily to be translated to others, the audience, her perspective is also the one of a curator, which workes exactly in this layer of presentation. While I want to take the relevant factors for the daramaturgy from the encounter with the presentee, she is used to think in the framework and structures given from the outside and thought about before in a discoursive method. Probably the mix of both is getting to a good result.

But I must admit, that in the last few years I was keeping myself out of festivals and discourses. I might simplify a bit the picture of scene in which I artistically was able to make a little career, but the discussion about to be right or wrong with art seems to be missing the point of it. From that moment on, I wasnt interested anymore in the field as such. Art should be able to be beyond all intellectual justifications, or?

The kick which I get through a critical point of view is good, but I hate it in the moment it happens.

Silvia and Daniele are wonderful hosts. They let me alone when I need to and always offer some company. Silvia knows my work from the beginning on and invited a few works before, of cause, only the ones she was at least 95 percent convinced of. Thats how it should be like with presenters. Honest, straight and long lasting. I want to thank them here again for that support and the invitation for "A Piece for You".

Well, of cause, Silvia, the shoemaker and me are not the same, of cause, but I like to understand the differences between people as marginal. Yes, I am an old humanist, if one wants me to be. Simple, but I dont see a reason jet why not to think we are all the same. The differences we can see are usually vanishing when it comes to extreem situations, which fortunately we dont experience so much. Differences seems to be good for one reason to me: to become creative.

But Stefano, he is a biker as well, and he was impressed by the project. As a craftsman he talks about the quality of things all the time. Motorcycles, gear, food and of cause about shoes. All week he works in a shoe factory, which produces partly by hand, partly by handcraft. At the moment he is specialised in stitching with the machine. There are many different stitches for all purposes. I can imagine him with his sharp edged face doing all that work.

Twice a month he also sells shoes in a shop where I visited him. He could explane me everything about each shoe in the shop. Company, where made, which leather, which made, how many pieces, how much working time, which use, which stile, how many euros.

Exitement goes over his face when he may talk about shoes and the work behind. His hands hold the shoe expertly. The fingers show signs of the manual work he does with those objects, corneal where you need it, cuts from the incredible sharp knife they use for the work. How the hands hold and move the object shows the skill and intelligence which makes them appear to me like independent living organisms.

The ideas I have so far for the performance for him dont really rock me jet, and I get doubts about my ability to manage this project.

I would need time, so much time, but the danger is also to get lazy. But is it a real danger? Why does art need to be always so representative? If everybody is creative, so my postulat, if art is just a variation of creativity, which each human being is creating all the time, why shouldnt people just make art for each other, why do they need the differenciation of experts and audience?

 My whish that the proletarian is recognized in the arts ...


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